The US Air Force (USAF) has announced the deployment of some F-22 fighter jets in Al Dhafra Air Base, UAE.
According to a USAF statement, a contingent of 27th Fighter Squadron F-22 Raptors and airmen from the 1st Fighter Wing (FW), Joint Base Langley-Eustis (JBLE) in Virginia was moved to the country.
The step was taken under the direction of US Secretary of Defense Lloyd J Austin III following a series of attacks on the UAE by Yemen’s Houthi rebels.
1st FW commander colonel William Creeden said: “This team of ready airmen, ready aircraft, and ready logistics are always prepared to support our combatant commanders downrange.
“With the vital support of the 192nd Wing and the 633rd Air Base Wing [ABW], we were able to provide short-notice air superiority to US Central Command [USCENTCOM].”
The 633rd ABW is the host wing and offers installation support to the 1st FW and 192nd Wing.
The 1st FW is USAF’s Air Combat Command’s only F-22 combat wing.
The unit is designed to provide F-22 airpower globally on short notice to support Combatant Commander taskings. It maintains two F-22 Air Dominance squadrons.
Creeden added: “The Raptor is the most dominant air superiority air-to-air fighter in the world.
“However, its critical advantage rests solely with the airmen who fly, fix, arm, sustain and enable it.”
Last year, the USAF approved the F-22 Raptor’s Formal Training Unit (FTU) at JBLE.
JBLE installation commander colonel Gregory Beaulieu said: “JBLE remains one of the nation’s premier power projection platforms.
“We are one team with the same end game — deliver combat airpower anytime, anywhere. And that’s exactly what we accomplished.”